Archive for October, 2007

More Banksy

Posted: October 25, 2007 in creativity
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Radiohead – In Rainbows

Posted: October 24, 2007 in creativity


In Rainbows, as a title, implies a sense of comfort and delightfulness. Symbolically, rainbows are more likely to be associated with kittens and warm blankets than the grim and glum circumstances Radiohead is known for soundtracking. There’s a slight, if expected, twist at play. The band is more than familiar with the unpleasant moods associated with colors like red, green, and blue — all of which, of course, are colors within a rainbow — all of which are present, and even mentioned, during the album. On a couple levels, then, In Rainbows is not any less fitting as a Radiohead album title than “Myxomatosis” as a Radiohead song title. Despite references to “going off the rails,” hitting “the bottom,” getting “picked over by the worms,” being “dead from the neck up,” and feeling “trapped” (twice), along with Radiohead Wordplay Deluxe Home Edition pieces like “comatose” and “nightmare” — in the same song! double score! — the one aspect of the album that becomes increasingly perceptible with each listen is how romantic it feels, albeit in the way that one might find the bioport scenes in David Cronenberg’s eXistenZ to be extremely hot and somewhat unsettling. Surprisingly, some of the album’s lyrics are even more personal/universal and straightforward than anything on The Eraser, the album made by Thom Yorke and Radiohead producer Nigel Godrich. “I’m an animal trapped in your hot car,” from “All I Need,” has to be one of the saddest, most open-hearted metaphors used to express unrequited love. “House of Cards” begins with “I don’t want to be your friend/I just want to be your lover/No matter how it ends/No matter how it starts,” and the one with the worms includes “I’d be crazy not to follow/Follow where you lead/Your eyes/They turn me.” This effective weaving of disparate elements — lyrical expressions commonly associated with the band, mixed in with ones suited for everyday love ballads — goes for the music as well. The album is very song-oriented, with each track constantly moving forward and developing, yet there are abstract electronic layers and studio-as-instrument elements to prevent it from sounding like a regression. In Rainbows will hopefully be remembered as Radiohead’s most stimulating synthesis of accessible songs and abstract sounds, rather than their first pick-your-price download.

Shadow art

Posted: October 18, 2007 in creativity


Some interesting street art from Brooklyn: Ellis is an undercover shadow artist; he traces the shadows of objects on the street such as a bicycle propped against a fence, a tree, a lamp post. The next morning the shadow has moved, but the trace is still there, a reminder of the shadow that once was. If you’re lucky enough, you’ll pass by at the right time, and see the shadow fit perfectly into the tracing.


 Don’t write history as poetry, because the weapon is
the historian. And the historian doesn’t get fever
chills when he names his victims, and doesn’t listen
to the guitar’s rendition. And history is the dailiness
of weapons prescribed upon our bodies. “The
intelligent genius is the mighty one.” And history
has no compassion that we can long for our
beginning, and no intention that we can know what’s ahead
and what’s behind … and it has no rest stops
by the railroad tracks for us to bury the dead, for us to look
toward what time has done to us over there, and what
we’ve done to time. As if we were of it and outside it.
History is not logical or intuitive that we can break
what is left of our myth about happy times,
nor is it a myth that we can accept our dwelling at the doors
of judgment day. It is in us and outside us … and a mad
repetition, from the catapult to the nuclear thunder.
Aimlessly we make it and it makes us … Perhaps
history wasn’t born as we desired, because
the Human Being never existed?
philosophers and artists passed through there …
and the poets wrote down the dailiness of their purple flowers
then passed through there … and the poor believed
in sayings about paradise and waited there…
and gods came to rescue nature from our divinity
and passed through there. And history has no
time for contemplation, history has no mirror
and no bare face. It is unreal reality
or unfanciful fancy, so don’t write it.
Don’t write it, don’t write it as poetry!


Some great examples of street art; I do like the flaking of some of the works, exemplifying an aspect of the nature of this artform, which makes it so much more real and dedicated to life as such than ‘high’ commodified art.




[via Little Pumpkins]

Meret & Ars Vitalis

Posted: October 12, 2007 in creativity

Last night I went to the Meret Becker performing with the German ‘music as theatre’ trio Ars Vitalis at the Studio. I didn’t know what to expect, and I’m glad no one told me beforehand; if I would have known it’s cabaret, I wouldn’t have gone. In this case though ignorance led to … well, lots of fun and no regrets. The almost 2hr performance was called “Hamonie Desastres”, a French pun meaning ‘harmony disasters’ as well as ‘harmony of the stars’. And I guess both makes sense, given that Meret describes their acts as arising from chaos.
Harmonie Desastres was poetry created from eruptions of theatre, magic, acrobatics, linguistic affluence, heavy metal, roaring jazz, a cappella shanties, classic cabaret songs, college rock and more. The performance sometimes took on the character of dream sequences, especially with those strange instruments like toy pianos, kids trumpets, handsaws and others that probably don’t even have names and would require elaborate descriptions. I think the Opera House blurb with excerpts from German newspapers describes best what last night was all about.
Meret provided a “kooky, weird and wonderful mix of absurdist cabaret, vaudeville, circus acts, wild projections, shadow puppetry and wacky waltzes … a hilarious and musically exhilarating journey from seedy underground Berlin to the future of 21st Century cabaret”.
Meret is right in the thick of it – snake and Lolita, Picasso artist with a touch of Josephine Baker. She breathes strangely twisted lyrics into the microphone and erupts into roaring vocalization shortly after – truly grand entertainment.
Ars_Vitalis.jpgAgainst the backdrop of a decapitated white swan beneath the stars and moon, the gentlemen of Ars Vitalis take up positions. Drummer Klaus Huber caressing his cymbals and toms with hand brushes while guitarist Buddy Sacher quietly ponders and saxophonist Peter Wilmanns measures the distance between instrument and microphone with finicky exactitude, Meret Becker in the midst of this miniature chamber of weirdoes. She looks gorgeous in her embroidered harlequin slack-suit, roaring Twenties style. It’s their joint tour »Harmonie Desastres«, a startling, pulsating, glistening composition of freak show, nostalgia fair, bizarre and magic musical moments…
Meret Becker comes from Berlin and is an acclaimed international cabaret performer, vocalist and hula-hoop extraordinaire. Ars Vitalis are Buddy Sacher, Peter Wilmanns, Klaus de Huber – three weird looking guys in their fifties (or older); they are behind their multi-award winning concept ‘music as theatre’. See also the SMH for more background on Becker, and their website on Ars Vitalis.

Unusal architecture

Posted: October 12, 2007 in creativity

South Jersey Real Estate has quite a long list of unusual house designs, some of which are shown below.

Located in Darmstadt and built between 1998 and 2000 by Friedensreich Hundertwasser, the famous Austrian architect and painter, widely renowned for his revolutionary, colourful architectural designs which incorporate irregular, organic forms, e.g. onion-shaped domes. The Hundertwasser house “Waldspirale” contains 105 apartments and wraps around a landscaped courtyard with a running stream. The turret at the southeast corner holds a restaurant, including a cocktail bar. Natural features of the landscape around the building are expressed in it: the layers of sedimentary rock found underneath the site are reflected on the facade in bands of ceramic tiles and coloured stucco. The roof above the 12 floors is formed by a garden of beech, maple, and lime trees.

What better example between European sophistication (the Hundertwasser building) and American crassness: the basket building. Located in Newark, Ohio the Basket Building is the home office of The Longaberger Basket Company. Founder Dave Longaberger decided he wanted the corporate home office in a giant basket. History of the Basket Building.

Located in Tourettes-sur-Loup, France, and was designed by the Hungarian architect Antti Lovag. At 35 years old, it has already been listed by the French ministry of culture as an historic monument.

Located in Sopot, Poland at Bohaterów Monte Cassino Street the Crooked House was constructed in 2003 based off of drawings from Jan Marcin Szancer and Per Dahlberg. Additional Photos and construction details from

Office building located in Prague, Czech Republic and designed by architects Vlado Miluni? and Frank Gehry. Because the building somewhat resembles a pair of dancers it was orginially named Fred and Ginger, after Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers. Later it was nicknamed the Dancing House.

This unique piano house was built recently in An Hui Province, China. Inside of the violin is the escalator to the building. The building displays various city plans and development prospects in an effort to draw interest into the recently developed area.

Patterns in Nature

Posted: October 12, 2007 in creativity

Not unsurprisingly, the National Geographics site contains some awesome photos – below are examples from four galleries of its Patterns in Nature series: Enigmatic Earth, Mysterious Earth, Aurorae and Sand.

The complexly branched arms of the basket sea star, or starfish, catch plankton for the echinoderm.
Photograph by Brian J. Skerry

The borders of four nations—Saudi Arabia, Oman, Yemen, and the United Arab Emirates—blur beneath the shifting sands of the Rub al Khali, or Empty Quarter, desert.
Photograph by George Steinmetz

The northern lights turn the night sky an otherworldly green above Wapusk National Park in Manitoba, Canada.
Photograph by Norbert Rosing

Strange creatures slithering up from the Empty Quarter desert floor in the Arabian Peninsula are really a network of barchan dunes—sculpted by winds that over time strike the sand from a consistent direction.
Photograph by George Steinmetz

Street art in Chile

Posted: October 9, 2007 in creativity



This is a kind of street art I absolutely love … just look at the top location! Both of them though need art much more than museum walls do! Photos taken by Inti from Valparaiso, Chile.

[via Art Crimes, which has fantastic graffiti from all over the world]

The Great Escape

Posted: October 8, 2007 in creativity

This is a beautiful clip based on Alex Produkt’s and Kathleen Weldon’s animation of Patrick Watson’s “The Great Escape” (from his enchanting 2006 album “Close to Paradise”).

(Alex Produkt and Kathleen Weldon launched this year THE LOST YEARS VOL.II, a 52 pages, colour/black & white limited edition comic with few words detailing a day in the life of a young boy and his teddy bear. Weaving between reality and the dark dream-time of the imagination, his teddy bear serves as a sort of shaman guide on his journey from home, to school, to the edge of nowhere.)